This huge piston driven airplane, dubbed “Peacemaker” has broken more records than any other aircraft. Not so much in its performance, but in its physical characteristics.
The B-36 used a piston engine, also called reciprocating engine, which is identical to the characteristics of a car engine and was the largest of its type to ever be constructed. The B-36’s wingspan was 230 feet, which was the longest wingspan of any combat aircraft.
This aircraft was the first bomber capable of delivering nuclear weapons and was incorporated in SAC. It had a range of 10,000 miles and was able to carry a maximum payload of 72,000 lbs.
It was also the world’s first manned bomber with an unrefueled intercontinental range.
The B-36 aircraft was decommissioned in 1959, however, the Peacemaker was the inspiration for long range and payload standards that set the stage for the newer fleet of intercontinental bombers, such as the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress, which used jet powered engines.
View the B-36 up close